Administrator Dashboard

This component is described in the overview section.

Installation Requirements

The PortalGuard Administrator Dashboard has the following requirements:

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2005 or later (Express and “full” versions are supported)


The files for the Administrator Dashboard are automatically installed by the PortalGuard server MSI. The default location is C:\InetPub\PortalGuard\PG_Dashboard.

Update web.config File

Users must be explicitly authorized to access the Administrator Dashboard. By default, only the user named “administrator” has access.

  1. In the InetPub\PortalGuard\PG_Dashboard folder, open the web.config file in any text editor.
  2. Under the <authorization> element, edit the existing <allow users=..> elements or add additional ones as necessary. The value of the users attribute must be the username used to log on to PortalGuard. If PortalGuard is configured to authenticate against Active Directory, then you would use the sAMAccountName here.
  3. Ensure all <allow> elements are above the <deny users="*"> element.

Install & Configure SQL Backend

PortalGuard stores its report data in a SQL backend. For new PortalGuard deployments, please follow all the steps in the PortalGuard SQL Backend section in Chapter 5 of this guide.

Notes on Upgrading an Existing PortalGuard Server

If you are upgrading from an older version of PortalGuard and already have the SQL schema in place, you still must run the “create_storedprocs.sql” script since there were changes to PortalGuard’s stored procedures. You must also run the following SQL command in SQL Server Management Studio to convert any existing data in PortalGuard’s RBAEvents table to use the appropriate timestamps (all timestamps are now saved in UTC instead of “local” time):

UPDATE RBAEvents SET Created=DATEADD(second, DATEDIFF(second, GETDATE(), GETUTCDATE()), Created)

Enable Reporting

If you wish to report on user logons (including VPN authentication) and self-service activity, enable the following setting in the Bootstrap Configuration using the PortalGuard Configuration Editor:

If you also wish to report on SSO activity through the PortalGuard Identity Provider, enable the following setting in the General IdP Settings in the Identity Provider Configuration:

These settings must be enabled for the respective PortalGuard components to save the report data to SQL. Actions performed before these settings have been enabled will not present in the reports.

Accessing the Administrator Dashboard

To access the PortalGuard Help Desk Console, simply open a browser and access the URL:


NOTE: Substitute the hostname or IP address of your PortalGuard server in the URL above.

When prompted by the PortalGuard UI, log in with an account that was authorized in the Update web.config File section.

Using Activity Reports

The Activity Reports interface displays when the Dashboard is first accessed. If you used the User Detail Lookup feature, then you can get back to the Activity Reports by simply clicking the Activity Reporting link in the upper right corner:

The defined reports within PortalGuard appear in the Reports drop-down list on the left-hand side. Choose the report you wish to see and click the Generate button.

Optionally, you can also filter the selected report to look for data for a specific user by typing the user’s logon name or last name in the User field. A type-ahead list of matching users will display as you type. Select the specific user and their full name will appear in the field. Click the Generate button again to see the filtered results. To see the full results once more, clear the value from the User field then click Generate again.

You can also optionally filter the report data using a start date, end date or both. Simply click the Start Date or End Date fields, use the calendar picker to choose the value and click the Generate button. If you directly type in a date, be sure it is in the following format:


Customizing Activity Reports

The new reporting feature in PortalGuard version 5 allows for easily customizing out of the box reports and creating your own custom reports. The report definition files are stored in the following folder:

Program Files\PistolStar\PortalGuard\Policies\ReportDefinitions

These files are simple XML containing the title and SQL query that will be run to generate the actual report. They can be directly edited using any text editor such as Notepad++ (link) or TextPad (link). Here is XML for the “Successful Logins” report:

The following table describes the elements in the XML file and their purpose:

Element Name



The root-level element – it must be present and contain all other elements, but it does not have any attributes or text value.


This is the title of the report. It is taken from here and directly displayed in the Report drop-down list. Any special characters must be XML-encoded (& è &amp;).


A parent level element that contains all SQL-specific child elements. You do not modify this element directly.


A child element of <sql>, this contains the main SQL query for the report. Since SQL may contain special characters that are not allowed in XML, this value must start with <![CDATA[ and end with ]]>. Whitespace is allowed in this value so you can cut and paste your query here even it it contains new lines.

PortalGuard automatically provides filtering on username and start/end times for all reports by appending extra information to the WHERE clause in this query. As such, any GROUP or ORDER directives must not be included in this main query. These are specified in the <group_order> element.

The values available in reports come from the RBAEvents table in SQL. You can query columns directly, but most detailed data is stored in the XMLData column. This data can also be reported on as well, but a specific syntax must be used to access these values. Please see any out of the box reports for examples of leveraging the data in the XMLData column. If you are having difficulty, please contact PortalGuard technical support for assistance.

NOTE: The column names returned in the SQL query become the table headers in the report display page.

Hint: You should test any new or modified SQL queries in SQL Management Studio first as PortalGuard’s Activity Reports web interface will not provide specific errors/details if the query is invalid.


A child element of <sql>, this element is used if you wish to GROUP or ORDER the result set. Specify those directives in this element. This portion of the query is separated from the main query so PortalGuard can append any username or date filtering to the main query in the <sql> element.

This value must still be valid SQL as it will be appended to the <query> value before it is passed to the SQL backend.


A child element of <sql>, this element has no direct element value. It is used to simply inform the PortalGuard Dashbhoard UI which column the result set is ordered by initially. The UI then highlights the appropriate column in the browser to match. The attributes are:

  • col – The number of the sorted column in the result set. This value is zero-based so the first column is represented by “0”, the second column is “1”, etc.
  • order – Set this to “asc” if the default sorting is Ascending and “desc” for Descending.


First column is initially sorted in ascending order:

<sorted col="0" order="asc" />

Second column is initally sorted in descending order:

<sorted col="1" order="desc" />

The report definition files must end with “.report.xml” in order to be seen by the reporting interface. The order these files display in the ReportDefintions folder in Windows Explorer is the order they will appear in the Report drop-down list on the web page itself. Any modifications or additions to these reports can be seen immediately by refreshing the Activity Reporting page in the browser. There is no need to restart the PortalGuard server.

User Detail Lookup

PortalGuard’s user profile data can be helpful when troubleshooting a user’s access issue. To see the PortalGuard user profile data for a specific user, click the “User Detail Lookup” link in the upper right corner:

In the User field, start typing the user’s logon name or last name. Matching names start automatically appearing after you’ve entered at least two characters:

Select a name and the full name will appear in the User field and all the user’s profile data will then be displayed:

To see the settings for a different user, click the Clear Display button and type the new name as detailed above. To return to the Activity Reporting, click the Activity Reporting link in the upper right-hand corner of the page.